Hi everyone, new yzf 450 (2004) owner

Hello everyone, just joined this site after lurking a couple of days.... I am a 40 year old geezer who was into Dirt bikes back in the late 1970's and early 80's, but stopped riding soon after those years, (street bikes, girls etc. came along) Anyway after prodding by a co-worker who bought a 2003 Yzf 450, I got a great deal on a 2004 Yzf 450 with about 50 hours or so on it, never raced only trail ridden. This bike is definately not your Father's Dirt Bike!! What a torque monster compared to the old YZ two strokes I rode years ago. The bike runs beautifully from idle to full out, and I rode it the first time last Tuesday for about 4.5 hours and again today for about two hours. Some observations:

The bike is tall and narrow, and top heavy, but to me it seems to ride much more stable at higher speeds than at creeping along (trail riding). I felt much more comfortable moving with some speed than I did twisting around the tight areas.

My first day of riding was at Tower City in Pennsylvania, with some friends on top of what is basically Mountains of Coal with trails that were heavily laced with embedded rock and loose rock. The bike was great on the trails, but when I tried the tighter turns on top of the Coal areas, the front tire would not bite in and seemed to "push-out" or slide out and dumped me twice at about 8 miles per hour or so. My tires are the stock Dunlop models, with about 1/2 inch center height tread on the rear, and about 3/8 inch tread left on the front. My buddy was riding his 2003 model with the Kenda Millville's, and he seemed to grip a lot better. I realize these tires are worn somewhat, but shouldn't they be doing better??

Also today I went riding with some ATV guys through woods and along power line valleys, and the rear tire on the hills was loosing traction if I didn't keep speed up (I was running at about 13 p.s.i. rear) the ground was compacted dirt/grass with an occasional rock here and there. If I stalled out on the hill, it was tough to keep from spinning even when feathering the Clutch. Is this tire just too hard/worn?? any recommendations would be appreciated....... Don Oh, by the way the bike is fully stock.


First let me say that at 40, you're a puppy. :naughty: As far as being a geezer, Satchel Paige said, "How old would you be if you didn't know how old you were?"

Three points about the front end wash out. One is you need to be up on the front of the seat if you aren't.

Next is that if you are still running the Dunlop 739, remove it and gently throw it far away. A Dunlop 756 makes a much better front tire, as would almost anything, really. They say the 739 is a hard surface tire. They do work pretty well on pavement. You will like the 756. You might find one that works better for the soils in your area, but not by as much as the improvement the 756 makes over the 739.

Lastly, I find that the bike turns better if I lean it over farther than I myself am leaning. Really stick the bar down there a ways and the tire seems to want to roll around the corner nicely, whereas if the bike and I are leaned at the same angle, or I lean in farther, it wants to push more.

Try a Maxxis IT on the rear. Great traction and long life.

Carrying a little speed up hills helps a bike climb, too, of course.

Thanks Grayracer for the info...It's been a number of years since I last rode, but it's coming back to me. This is a pretty intimidating beast to ride, but already I'm getting my "dirt" legs back.

You're definately right about the seat position...I tend to ride "old school" method, quite a ways back like we did when the seats were much smaller, and the gas tanks were bigger. I gotta move forward. Also after riding for about 4.5 hours up at Tower City over mainly rocks, and compacted Coal, I noticed the middle tread on the rear has developed an angle on the leading edge of the center tread, maybe this angle is contributing to the lack of traction especially on the steeper hills???

Thanks for the tire info, and also for the leaning recommendations....that first day of riding was somewhat intimidating, and I wasn't leaning much at all. Hurray! I'm just a puppy!!

Oh, by the way, can I post some pictures?? I wanted to show some tread photos. Is there a FAQ for how to post photos??? Don

Howdy and welcome and con-grats on an awesome bike purchase !!!

I also have an '04 450f and had an '02 426. First things first, take that 739 front tire and carefully place it in your back yard. Next take a gallon of gasoline and carefully soak the 739 front tire. Place a match or other burning object onto the tire while keeping a safe distance. Now sit back and enjoy the best moment of your life. :D

I have only used 756 front tires and love them, they wear a little to quick but are worth the piece of mind. These hybrid 4-strokes push in the soft corners, like stated earlier, you have to plan the corner as early as possible and slid up and over on the bike, if i catch myself being lazy ill feather the clutch and try to keep the momentum of the engine from dropping on the front tire. :naughty:

Enjoy your power house on two wheels, I had a broken right hand thanks to a 739 front tire. GET RID OF IT. I have zero complaints about the 739 rear however, and still use them. :naughty:

You need a web based host for pictures, like photobucket or village photo, or your own web space. Then you can drop a link into the post. The site would never be able to have enough bandwidth otherwise.

Thanks Grayracer and Unibomber for the info. I'll definately be ordering new tires. The 756 up front, and probably the Maxis IT on the rear. By the way it's been years since I replaced tires, any help or links on how to do it properly would be appreciated.


Thanks SureBlue for a great article......


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